US President Barack Obama has revealed his frustration at the lack of progress with legislation around firearm regulation.
The comments came following the shooting of TV reporter Alison Parker, 24, and Adam Ward, 27, on Wednesday (local time) as they filmed an on-air morning news segment.
It prompted the White House to issue a call to Congress to tighten regulation of the weapons.
“What we know is that the number of people who die from gun-related incidents around this country dwarfs any deaths that happen through terrorism,” Obama told ABC.
“It breaks my heart every time you read or hear about these kinds of incidents.”
Figures show more than 33,100 incidents of gun violence have occurred in the US so far in 2015, with 8487 deaths.
More than 220 mass shooting incidents have been reported.
Obama’s comments joined tweets from presidential-hopeful Hillary Clinton who commented “we must act to stop gun violence, and we cannot wait any longer. Praying for the victims’ families in Virginia”.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest told a daily media briefing on Wednesday “common sense” changes were required.
“There are some common sense things that only Congress can do that we know would have a tangible impact on reducing gun violence in this country,” spokesman Josh Earnest said on Wednesday.
“Congress could take those steps in a way that would not infringe on the constitutional rights of law abiding Americans.”
– with AAP